“A Lot of Double Treatment”: Serena Williams’ Coach Calls Out Chair Umpire for US Open 2018 Final Controversy

Published 09/25/2021, 10:02 AM EDT
NEW YORK, NY – SEPTEMBER 08: Serena Williams of the United States argues with referee Brian Earley during her Women’s Singles finals match against Naomi Osaka of Japan on Day Thirteen of the 2018 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 8, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)


The 2018 US Open final between Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka sparked one of the most substantial controversies in the tennis world. To date, many still ponder on Serena receiving the code violation for on-court coaching, then a game penalty for verbal abuse, resulting in her loss in straight sets. So what actually happened in that match? Her coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, recently revealed their side of the story. 

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Firstly, the French coach explained how everyone on the Tour engages in on-court coaching. Afterward, he did admit to coaching Serena during the match but called out the chair umpire on that day, Carlos Ramos, for double standards.

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In the end, the US Open women’s final became an emotional roller-coaster for both players. However, Mouratoglou felt grateful to let people know the insides of that match.

Naomi Osaka of Japan cries after winning the Women’s Singles finals match alongside runner up Serena Williams of the United States on Day Thirteen of the 2018 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 8, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Patrick Mouratoglou on Serena Williams vs. Naomi Osaka, US Open 2018 Controversy

To begin with, Mouratoglou stated that the on-court coaching rule is a “dream” but not a “reality” in tennis. He then explained why he and Serena Williams do not usually do on-court coaching.

“Honestly, Serena and myself were really low on coaching. First, I don’t want to do it because she is the best player ever in history to figure out how to win when she is in trouble. This is her strength. So, if she starts to think she needs me, it can only affect her negatively. That’s probably one of the reasons why we don’t do it,” Mouratoglou said.

ASB TENNIS CENTER, AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – 2016/12/30: Tennis super star Serena Williams with her coach Patrick Mouratoglou during a training session at ASB Tennis Centre, Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Shirley Kwok/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Following that, he admitted to coaching that night because of the drama. The coach added that he could feel Serena feeling lost, and so he did it. “I don’t regret it at all,” he stated.

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Mouratoglou calls out the ‘Double Treatment’  

Most importantly, however, he revealed that the “double treatment” from the chair umpire annoyed him a lot. “It is unacceptable. And that was also very shocking for that because there is a lot of double treatment,” Patrick continued. Although he agreed that all chair umpires have their way, there should be consistency.

“But this chair umpire had a completely different way to behave in the same situation in a lot of other matches. So, you are the victim of someone who decides that today, this is the rule, and tomorrow, the rule is going to be different. So that was very annoying,” Patrick concluded.

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All in all, Patrick and Serena both moved on from that match and still chase their 24th Grand Slam passionately. Do you think they will win another Grand Slam in 2022?

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Purav Joshi

1238 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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